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Amid COVID, Centre Exempts Pregnant Women, Divyang Employees From Attending Officies
All officials and staff living in the containment zones will also be exempted from coming to office till the time containment zones are denotified.
New Delhi: In the wake of continuously rising COVID-19 cases, Minister of State (Independent Charge) Personnel, Public Grievances, Dr Jitendra Singh on Sunday said that pregnant women employees and Divyang (differently-abled) employees of central government departments have been exempted from attending office. However, they will be required to remain available and work from home.
According to an official release issued by the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, the Union Minister said all officials and staff living in the containment zones will also be exempted from coming to office till the time containment zones are denotified.
The Central government restricted the physical attendance of government servants below the level of Under Secretary to 50 per cent of the actual strength and asked the remaining 50 per cent to work from home. A roster will be prepared accordingly by all the departments concerned, said the Minister.
However, the Minister said, the officials and staff who are not attending the office and are working from home shall remain available on the telephone and other electronic means of communications at all times.
Given the rapid spread of the viral infection, the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) issued an office memorandum regarding COVID protocols to be followed while in office.
New Guidelines issued by DoPT
- In the Office memorandum, officials are asked to conduct meetings as far as possible through video conferencing.
- Avoid personal meetings with visitors, unless absolutely necessary.
- To avoid overcrowding in the office premises, the official and staff have been asked to follow staggered timings from– (a) 9 am to 5.30 pm and (b) 10 am to 6.30 pm.
- All the officers/staff are advised to ensure strict compliance of COVID-appropriate behaviour, that is, frequent washing of hands/sanitisation, wearing face mask/face cover, and observing social distancing all the time.
- Proper cleaning and sanitisation of the workplace, particularly frequently touched surfaces, may also be ensured.
Singh said that the guidelines issued as per the DoPT office memorendum will remain in force till January 31. In the meantime, the regular review will be carried out from time to time and the guidelines may be revised accordingly depending on the situation.